A family rents a car to travel from Phoenix to Boston for the NHL Winter Classic due to a delayed flight to the southwest

Tim Maher and his family plan to attend the 2023 NHL Winter Classic between the Boston Bruins and Pittsburgh Penguins at Fenway Park on January 2.

When her Southwest Airlines flight from Phoenix continued to be delayed, Maher didn’t panic. Instead, he and his family sprang into action and did something few people would do.

He rented a car, and now he and his family are driving from Phoenix to Boston, a 39-hour trek, to fulfill his 17-year-old son’s wish to go to the Winter Classic.

“He said, ‘The only gift I want is that I want to go back to Boston for the Classic,'” Maher, who bought tickets for the whole family, told WCVB-TV Boston.

Few people would make it their plan B, but the Maher family doesn’t have to rush to Boston. The game takes place on January 2, which gives them plenty of time to get there.

The Maher family sat on the ground at Phoenix Sky Harbor airport listening to announcements that their flight had been repeatedly delayed.

“I said, ‘That’s not happening. Like, nothing happens,” Maher said.

So they drove to Enterprise grounds, drove home in a rental car, slept for a few hours, and packed some extra clothes before heading east.

Construction for the 2023 Discover NHL Winter Classic continues at Fenway Park on December 27, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts.
NHLI via Getty Images

The Maher family is surely off to a good game. The Bruins have the best record in the NHL, and the Penguins, at 19-9-5, are in full playoff contention and won eight of their last 10 games on Tuesday.

This is the second time the Classic will be played at Fenway Park. The Bruins defeated the Philadelphia Flyers in 2010 at the famed ballpark.

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